Madang update: Teacher’s head returned

Over a week later, the head of the decapitated teacher has been returned.

The deceased, from Ialibu, was a teacher at Bau Primary School, Madang Province.

Madang MP Bryan Kramer said the man was viciously attacked and killed on Tuesday, April 3, between 8pm and 10pm while his headless body was found the next day along the road.

Following his death, his family members traveled down to Madang to collect the body, insisting on the recovery of the head as well.

Word of the killing spread throughout the Highlands community in Madang, prompting the setup of a roadblock last Friday (April 6) by men from the same region, triggering a series of confrontations.

After a meeting yesterday (April 12) with community leaders from where the teacher was killed, the head was returned late last night.

On his Facebook page, Kramer said: “I explained to the community leaders that if the head was not returned in the next 24 hours then I would make a request to the Provincial Police Commander to set up operations in the area until it is found, including those behind the killing.

“The head was brought down to Madang town 10:30pm last night. It was picked up by the former Member of Madang Buka Malaia and delivered to Governor of Madang.”

Kramer then arranged for the deceased’s relatives this morning, in the company of Police CID, to confirm the victim’s identity.

“Following the postmortem today, arrangements will be made to fly the body of the late teacher to Mt Hagen where it will be received by relatives from Ialibu and transported back to his home village,” said Kramer, who has been on ground since April 8th.

“Police investigations are underway to establish the circumstances behind the killing. What I can confirm is it had nothing to do with any cult ritual but a targeted killing following a personal feud with local youth in the area.

“My sincere apologies to the family of the deceased teacher and people of Ialibu. I wish to assure them those behind the killing will be apprehended and dealt with by the law.”

While it is understood that many from the teacher’s area are upset over the killing, the Madang MP pointed out that four local youth were also killed while a number suffered injuries.

The youth were shot by police whilst protesting certain opportunists in Madang from the highlands region, mostly street sellers, who were targeting innocent Madang people over the killing of the teacher.

The protest was staged on Monday, April 9, by hundreds of South Ambenod people at the Four-Mile market.

(Madang MP Bryan Kramer, right, and Madang CID officer at the Modilon Hospital morgue)

Carmella Gware